Magnificent Seven March to Blackpool

Magnificent Seven March to Blackpool

A group of former servicemen trekked 45 miles from Bury to Blackpool to raise money for Broughton House.

They completed their overnight sponsored hike in just over 12 hours, accompanied by a fleet of support drivers.

Setting off at 7pm from The Knowsley pub on Haymarket Street, Bury, the seven-strong posse comprised ex-servicemen Wayne Gandy, Andy Power, Paul Andrews and Darrell Bancroft, and friends of the group Ben Cartner, Dave Candler and Donna Dickinson.

Their route took them via Belmont, Chorley and Preston, and they finished their walk at The Manchester pub on Blackpool’s promenade at around 7.15am the following day.

The support drivers were David Platt, Mick Cheetham, Alan Gibbs, Mike Harling and Tim Murphy.

All those involved are members or supporters of the Bury-based group Walk Like A Veteran, which has raised over £12,000 since it was established in 2016.

This was the third time they have walked from Bury to Blackpool. One year, the group hiked from Manchester to Liverpool.

The proceeds of their endeavours are split between The Fusiliers Association and Broughton House.

Wayne said he expects this year’s total to rise further, with collections at Tesco’s Bury story later this month and at The Knowsley when it reopens following a refurbishment project.

Andy said: “There were a few tender bodies at the end of the hike but everyone enjoyed themselves. Many of us are former fusiliers and, as well as raising money for our association, we think it’s important to support Broughton House and the veterans living there.”

Rhys Edwards, fundraising and marketing manager at Broughton House, said: “We are absolutely delighted that the Walk Like A Veteran team have once again successfully walked from Bury to Blackpool in support of Broughton House.

“The planning and the recruitment of walkers is a difficult job and the group’s success is testament to the hard work they put in each year. We can’t thank them enough for their continued support.”